Fujifilm just announced the much anticipated X100V, which replaces the much loved X100F. The X100 series hasn’t changed much externally since it began. This is one of the most beautifully designed cameras in the digital era, so why change it? There’s no reason, so Fujifilm doesn’t. The X100V looks nearly identical to the original X100. What’s different is internal.
Fujifilm redesigned the lens. It looks the same and has the same specs, but with improved sharpness, particularly corner sharpness wide-open. The rear screen now tilts and is a touch-screen. Unfortunately, and this is perhaps the biggest external change, the D-Pad is now gone, but this isn’t a huge deal, as you get used to the touch controls pretty quickly. The viewfinder has been given a small upgrade. The X100V is weather-resistant, which is not the same as weather-sealed; it’s designed to handle the elements a little better than previous versions.
The biggest upgrade for this camera is the X-Trans IV sensor and processor. This is the same sensor and processor found in the X-T3, X-T30 and X-Pro3, yet the X100V has the new features found in the X-Pro3 that aren’t (yet) found in the X-T3 and X-T30, including the Classic Negative film simulation. The X100V is faster, more feature-rich, and has better video capabilities than the X100F.
Is the X100V a camera that you should buy? Whenever a new camera is released, it’s easy to want it. It’s easy to get caught up in the hype. It’s easy to have camera envy. The X100V will be a fantastic camera, no doubt about it! The X100 series cameras are easy to love. But should you really drop everything and order your copy today?
My opinion is this: if you already own the X100F, keep it! The upgrade isn’t significant enough to justify buying the new model. The X100F and the X100V are very similar to each other. If you wear out your X100F, then buy the new model, but if it still works just fine, don’t change cameras. If you have an older model, such as the original X100, X100S or X100T and are considering upgrading, I say sure, why not? But if those cameras still work and bring you joy, why rush to get the new model? If you are trying to decide between the X100F and X100V and money is no issue, go with the X100V, which is a little better than its predecessor. But if you are like most people and have a tight budget, the X100F is nearly as good and can be found for a little cheaper.
The X100V will be released on February 27 with an MSRP of $1,400.
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An interesting side note: I predicted that this version of the X100 would be called the X100V way back in September of 2017. The “S” in X100S stands for second, the “T” in X100T stands for third, and the “F” in X100F stands for fourth, so nobody really knew what the next one would be called. Some predicted X200, or X110, or X110F, or X100N (“N” for new or next), or X100A (because A is the first letter of the alphabet), or X100Z (because Z is the last letter of the aphabet). I took a guess at “V” because it’s the Roman numeral for five, and this is the fifth iteration of the X100. I have no idea what the next one after the X100V might be called. Any guesses?